The Prime Minister of Ireland Leo Varadkar says that he is optimistic about reopening the borders in summer for European countries. He said, “Summer is not yet lost.”
Many European countries are also planning to reopen their borders. Germany, Austria, and Spain plan to lift the restrictions with its neighboring countries this month.
Tourists entering Ireland will have to self-quarantine for 14 days. The country anticipates an opening for nonessential travel via so-called “air bridges” with the countries that have less affected people.
Varadkar says, “I hope that as the world returns to a new normality, we will see international air travel resume, in the first instance through air bridges with countries that have suppressed the virus to a similar extent as ours.”
In addition, he said, “This, however, is some weeks away and it’s far too soon for anyone to book their holidays yet but summer is not yet lost.”
The Irish government plans to review its rule of 14-day quarantine for travelers on 18 June. Consequently, this rule faces strict opposition by the country’s airline Ryanair and they say it is not possible to implement.
However, Ireland was hopeful to restart international travel in the summer. The acting Prime Minister Leo Varadkar gave a statement.
He said, “The point we’d like to get to later in the year – hopefully later in the summer – is being able to travel point to point from Ireland to other countries where they have successfully suppressed the virus.” In addition, he said, “that’s a bit away yet.”
Relaxation in Restrictions
From this week there is a relaxation in lockdown. Irish people can commute anywhere in the country or up to a larger distance of 20km from their homes. There will be no travel restrictions from 29 June.
Up to six people can meet indoors or outdoors. Similarly, for outdoor sports, a group of 15 people can meet. However, for funerals up to 25 people can attend.
People going to the office can work from home. Public libraries will be open. However, there will be a new summer education program for children. It will explain about special learning needs of children.
With supervision, playgrounds can reopen. But they must be only 15 people mixing together. Training facilities can also open for high-performance athletes.
The Prime Minister also confirms that shops will reopen from this week. “The shops that are reopening will be required to operate staggered hours opening no earlier than 10:30 am and allocating dedicated time for the elderly, vulnerable and at risk.”
Shopping malls will reopen from 15 June, with a strict rule to follow social distancing. However, Hotels, restaurants, hostels, and museums can reopen from 29 June. Places of worship will resume services with precautions.
Moreover, Ireland had just 25,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus. Whereas, 1,659 deaths due to the pandemic. The number of cases, deaths, and admissions to the hospital has all been falling in recent weeks.